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Tuesday, April 02, 2019

Can A.I. truly be creative? One brilliant Brit makes a compelling case | Emerging Tech - Digital Trends

 This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Marcus du Sautoy is a bestselling author and one of the U.K.’s leading mathematicians. In his latest book, The Creativity Code, he ponders whether A.I. algorithms can ever truly be creative, according to Luke Dormehl, UK-based tech writer covering Cool Tech at Digital Trends. 

Mathematician Marcus du Sautoy
Photo: Marcus du Sautoy

The question of whether or not a machine can be creative is one that has caused plenty of ponderous head-scratching among computer scientists and those working in the humanities. While it may seem insignificant next to challenges like robots eating our jobs, killer robots in modern warfare, or the threat of artificial intelligence gaining consciousness and going all Skynet on us, it’s actually pretty darn crucial. Creativity isn’t just about painting pretty pictures or writing a novel; it’s about the ability to come up with new strategies and ways of looking at the world.

The latest thinker to tackle this heady question is Marcus du Sautoy. One of the U.K.’s leading mathematicians, a bestselling author, and science and math popularizer, du Sautoy’s new book is titled The Creativity Code: Art and Innovation in the Age of A.I.

Its author spoke with Digital Trends about the book and his answer to the question of whether artificial intelligence can be truly creative — and what this means for the future of machine intelligence.

Why is creativity and A.I. a topic deserving of its book? And, more importantly, why now?

For me, the idea of creativity — writing novels or music — is something we viewed as uniquely human. After all, if you’ve got an algorithm, then surely the human coder is the creator because they’ve written the algorithm and it can only do what its creator tells it to do. That’s what Ada Lovelace first said when she thought about the power of the Analytical Engine. She was interested in something that could do more than just computation and suggested that it might even one day write music. However, she always noted that it would never be doing more than what the programmer told it to do.

Recommended Reading

The Creativity Code:
Art and Innovation in the Age of AI
The award-winning Marcus du Sautoy, author of The Music of the Primes explores the future of creativity and how machine learning will disrupt, enrich, and transform our understanding of what it means to be human. 

Source: Digital Trends